The latest findings from the HomeLet Rental Index have revealed that rent prices have slowed below double figures to an average annual rise of 8.5% across the UK. This followed six months of annual rent price rises of 10% or higher.
Every region of the UK, with the exception of the East Midlands, saw annual rent prices slow down or move into negative growth for the three months to September 2015.
The Rental Index also showed that nine out of twelve UK regions are still witnessing rent increases on an annual basis. The largest growth was seen in Scotland (8.4%), the East Midlands (7.7%) and Greater London (6.6%), while rent prices in the North West, East Anglia and Northern Ireland lapsed into negative growth.
When comparing September’s figures to August's, the Index reveals that just three regions have seen rent prices increase in this period: only Scotland, the East Midlands and West Midlands have seen values go up, by 1.2%, 1.4% and 1.4% respectively.
Across every other region of the UK rent prices fell modestly in the three months to September 2015, with the largest price drops seen in the South West, the North East and North West.
The average rent in the UK for new tenancies over the three months to September 2015 was £995 per month, while the average rent for a new tenancy in Greater London currently stands at £1,555 per month. Despite this, rents in Greater London actually fell on a month-on-month basis for the first time since February 2015.
“The UK economy has dipped into ‘negative inflation’ which is a boost to consumers’ spending power and, ultimately, their real income,” Martin Totty, Barbon Insurance Group’s CEO, said.
“Affordability is an important factor in determining rents. Depending on what happens with inflation and real incomes over the coming months, could have a bearing on future rental price trends especially where, in certain areas of the country, the supply of rental properties is not keeping pace with demand from those wishing to be private sector renters.”